Introduction: Breitling reaffirms its supreme mastery of chronographs by unveiling its own split-seconds chronograph movement – one of the most sophisticated horological complications.
Breitling is once again confirming its leadership position in the field of mechanical chronographs. Launching its manufacture BreitlingCaliber B03, officially chronometercertified by the COSC, it is also consolidating its crucial role in the development of this type of instrument.This epic saga also includes the famous 1944 Duograph – one of the great Breitling classics – that is much sought-after among collectors and equipped with an ultra-thin split-seconds chronograph movement.
Styled for performance
With its two superimposed central chronograph hands, of which one can be stopped so as to measure an intermediate (split) time, before “catching up” with the first one still sweeping onwards, the split-seconds chronograph is considered one of the hardest watchmaking mechanisms to create.
In developing its own split-seconds chronograph movement, Breitling has adopted an innovative approach to this exceptional mechanism. True to its philosophy of “instruments for professionals”, the specialist of technical watches has opted to focus on sturdiness, precision and reliability as applied to large-scale production. The aim was to develop a system ensuring optimal performance with a minimum of components and serving to eliminate the lengthy adjustment process.
In developing its self-winding split-seconds chronograph Caliber B03, Breitling worked on the basis of its Manufacture BreitlingCaliber 01, an intelligent platform that has already enabled the addition of other useful functions such as second timezone or worldtime displays featuring unprecedented user friendliness. The B03 therefore picks up all the advantages of this high-performance ‘engine’, including a 70-hour power reserve (guaranteeing enhanced rating regularity) as well as innovative modular-type architecture. The split-seconds mechanism comprises just 28 parts. Regrouping most of these components in a module fitted between the mainplate and the calendar mechanism not only simplifies production and assembly, but also maintenance – since the watchmaker can remove the module as a single block for any servicing or repairs. Like all Breitling movements, the Manufacture BreitlingCaliber
B03 is chronometer-certified by the COSC (Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute), the only precision and reliability benchmark based on an international norm.
NavitimerRattrapante: at the heart of prowess
To highlight its exceptional new ‘engine’, Breitling has chosen its famous Navitimer, the doyenne of all mechanical chronographs produced worldwide (since 1952). Equipped with a 45 mm case, the NavitimerRattrapante comes in steel as well as a 250-piece red gold limited edition (equipped with a transparent caseback). Both watches are distinguished by their exclusive bronze-colored dial, serving as a backdrop for the silver-toned counters and inner bezel reflecting the classic Navitimer look. In an extremely refined detail, the B logo with its anchor symbol generally adorning the base of the Navitimer chronograph hands is in this instance divided between the two seconds hands: with the B on the red chronograph hand and the anchor on the split-seconds hand. This means the two elements are separated when the split-seconds hand is stopped, before reforming the brand signature when the hands are again overlaid. The split-seconds pusher, housed in the 3 o’clock crown, serves to stop and restart the split-seconds hand as often as desired during a timing operation – in order to measure split times or to compare the results of several competitors.
The ultimate mechanical chronograph in a legendary in itself, it comes with the water resistance of 3 bars and transparent sapphire crystal caseback.
To present this major technical breakthrough, Breitling has chosen its most emblematic model, the famous Navitimer, interpreted in steel or gold with an exclusive bronze-colored dial. With unique rotating bezel with circular slide rule, along with cambered sapphire crystal, and glare proofed on both sides. The Navitimer is supported by leather, crocodile, rubber Navitimer.